Four Snowboarders Sue Alta Ski Resort Using 14th Amendment

Kyler Roush | | Featured ArticleFeatured Article

gavel on white background

You did just read the title right…

A 501(c3) pendng group (Not for Profit) has just filed suit against Alta Ski Lifts Company and their policy that has banned snowboarders from accessing their lifts.  The entire 4 person group who has started a not for profit entitled Wasatch Equality are all listed as plaintiffs in the suit filed in the Utah District Court.

Read the whole lawsuit here

Rick Alden, Drew Hicken, Bjorn Leines and Richard Varga believe that Alta’s ban on Snowboarding violates the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.


Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Read the rest of the 14th Amendment.

Throughout the suit which was filed today, Wednesday, January 15th 2014, the word discrimination is used time and time again.  They state that discrimination is banned and therefore the USFS, Alta, USDA etc are violating their rights.  However when you read what classes are protected through anti-discriminatory laws you will find Snowboarding is NOT a protected class of people.

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Equal Pay/ Compnesation
  • Genetic Information
  • Harassment
  • National Orgin
  • Pregnancy
  • Race/ Color
  • Religion
  • Retaliation
  • Sex
  • Sexual Harrasment

What are your thoughts about the lawsuit filed against Alta or their policy banning snowboards?

Should Snowboarders come together and make a snowbaording only resort and “Discriminate” against skiers?

Related Articles

14 thoughts on “Four Snowboarders Sue Alta Ski Resort Using 14th Amendment

  1. A precedence will be set and the pass buyer will probably be paying for it if this succeeds. I could foresee litigious persons want to go snow shoeing/sledding at Alpine Meadows while the rest of their group skis. “No up hill traffic/sledding”……”but this is public land.” Lawyer up – not according to Wasatch Equality v. Alta Ski Company and see your ass in court. Resorts now have to create a budget line item for “Equal Protections” lawsuits and guess where that $$ will come from….. the Wasatch Equality lawyers?

  2. Alta blows anyway. Leave it to smug skiers to get all riled up about intermediate terrain. Competing at Bird in TNF Masters a few years ago, the riders were consistently heckled my mid level, middle aged skiers hollering about Alts. Keep it, we don’t want it.

  3. whatever your feelings on Alta are – they operate on a lease from the USFS and will likely LOSE this lawsuit. I ski and there was a time I would have supported the ban on boards, those days are way over and I support opening PUBLIC land to the PUBLIC – So Unless the resort operates on SOLELY PRIVATE PROPERTY they are in violation of the law – Alta will lose.

    1. Hairfarmer-

      After reading the above article, you agree with the plaintiffs that Snowboarders are a protected class of citizens under the 14th amendment and should be allowed use of Alta’s lifts? Are all citizens allowed to use public land for whatever they please?

      I’m an avid tobogganer. I plan to sue all ski and snowboard resorts operating on federal land that restrict tobogganing. We tobogganers are a protected class of citizens.

  4. Yeah but we both share the mountain at other resorts, correct? The mountain is the playing field. A tennis court doesn’t exist on a golf course, therefore your point is invalid. Follow me?

    1. I would argue that putting greens and grass courts are in fact very similar in a textural sense.

      I don’t really care one way or the other whether they allow boarders or not. If Alta is on private land, it should be up to their discretion. I don’t honestly know if they are or not. But if the resort is on public land, then I see a reasonable argument for riders.

  5. Well that sucks. Never knew some places still ban snowboarding. If you haven’t snowboarded before, you should try it then talk. If you’ve never skied give it a try. It’s all winter sports at the end of it all, don’t understand where this fuss is coming from. I do both but prefer snowboarding so hearing this is disheartening. Hug it out?

  6. Its nice to have a place that is only for skiers… But skier or snowboarder, you’ll always find one of them cutting across the cat track not paying any attention to all those that they are cutting off. I was a snowboarder for sixteen years, now I’m a skier through and through. If snowboarders want to throw it in our face and establish a ski resort only for snowboarders, by all means be our guests… But will it still be considered a ski resort??

  7. my 2 best days last week were at alta and deer valley, nice vertical flow and plenty of intact powder instead of the usual diagonal bs created by low/mid level boarders

  8. Snowboarders should be allowed anywhere they wanna go as long as it has not snowed in the last 24 hours… They are the best at loosening the packed snow as far as I’ve experienced and they do serve a purpose for us skiers. By 11 am please kick them out as they have served their purpose. Snowboarders should also be required to take a 60 hours course on proper technique to exit the lifts, it’s truly annoying and embarrassing to see them crash every time… It’s funny how they get nervous about 20 ft from the top… . Maybe they should practice on that golf course ?

    1. Why the F would anyone WANT to play tennis on a golf course????? That makes no sence sooooooo you’re dumb.

Got an opinion? Let us know...